Spotify Gains Steam in Expanding Online Audio Market

April 10, 2020

This article is included in these additional categories:

Boomers & Older | Demographics & Audiences | Industries | Media & Entertainment | Teens & Younger | Youth & Gen X

EdisonResearchTritonDigital US Online Audio Podcast Reach 2000 2020 Apr2020Almost 7 in 10 (68%) Americans ages 12+ listen to online audio on a monthly basis. And, while online audio adoption for younger Americans has leveled off, listening by older adults is on the rise, with the Infinite Dial report from Edison Research and Triton Digital finding that 76% of 35-54-year-olds and 42% of adults 55 and older listened to online audio in the month prior to being surveyed.

Pandora continues to enjoy the distinction of having the highest brand awareness among online audio brands, with 85% of the more than 1,500 Americans ages 12 and older surveyed saying they have heard of the brand. However, it’s Spotify that can boast the most active listeners, per the survey, with 22% of respondents reporting having listened to Spotify in the week prior to the survey, up from 20% in 2019.

Pandora, on the other hand, has seen weekly listenership drop over the past couple of years, falling from 23% in 2018 to 18% in 2020. And while Amazon Music (10%) and Google Play (6%) have seen modest growth over the past year, they are a long way from threatening Spotify’s hold on the streaming audio market.

Spotify (28% share) and Pandora (24% share) are also the audio brands that are used most often by respondents. The fact that most listeners are primarily using either Spotify or Pandora amplifies recent research indicating that streaming audio listeners are still quite happy to use ad-supported streaming services.

Youth Love Spotify, Older Americans Stay True to Pandora

EdisonResearchTritonDigital Online Audio Brand Usage Apr2020

The majority (86%) of respondents ages 12-34 report listening to online audio in the month prior to the survey, and Spotify appears to have captured their fancy. Nearly half (48%) of respondents ages 12-34 say they listened to Spotify in the month prior to the survey, up slightly from 46% in 2019. Apple Music (21%, up from 20%), Amazon Music (15%, up from 10%), and Google Play (10%, up from 8%) also experienced various levels of growth in young listeners, while SoundCloud engagement declined (from 23% to 17%).

As with respondents as a whole, the number of younger Americans who listened to Pandora in the month prior to the survey decreased from last year. However, the decrease was even more pronounced among younger listeners, dropping from 36% in 2019 to 26% in 2020.

When looking at 35-54-year-olds, the findings are somewhat different. Although the report shows that listenership of Spotify grew slightly with this age group (20% in 2020 vs. 18% in 2019), Pandora remains the dominant audio brand, with more than one-third (35%) listening in the previous month.

Despite all this, it is worth noting that the average time spent listening to online audio weekly across age groups fell by more than an hour between 2019 (16:43) and 2020 (15:12).

To read more, find the report here.

About the Data: Findings are based on a telephone survey of 1,502 Americans ages 12+ fielded in January/February 2020.


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